Sen. Schatz to oppose military strike on Syria

Published On: Sep 05 2013 02:55:11 PM HST
Updated On: Sep 06 2013 12:09:13 PM HST

 Sen. Brian Schatz

HONOLULU -

Sen. Brian Schatz announced Thursday that he will oppose U.S. military strikes on Syria.

"I have weighed the expert briefings and analysis, and listened closely to the people of Hawaii.  Though all of us are outraged by the Assad regime's use of chemical weapons, I have concluded that a military strike against Syria is not the answer," said Sen. Schatz.  "Therefore, I will oppose this resolution."

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard said she has "personal concerns" that the U.S. still has troops in Afghanistan.  She spoke with Lara Yamada on the KITV Morning News Thursday morning.

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President Barack Obama is at the G-20 summit in Russia, but that didn't stop him from doing some lobbying with members of Congress back home.  Obama is looking to build support for a resolution authorizing a U.S. military strike on Syria.

Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes says Obama's been making phone calls to lawmakers even as he attends the economic summit. The president spoke to a bipartisan group of five lawmakers on Wednesday.

The administration held another round of closed-door meetings with lawmakers Thursday about its intelligence on Syria.  As she entered the meeting, Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine questioned the necessity of U.S. military action.  She insisted there were other ways to pressure Syria's Bashar Assad, short of an American intervention.  And Collins said the administration still hasn't presented a clear strategy.

Republican Sen. Richard Burr of North Carolina said it's up to the administration to present lawmakers with the necessary information. And when it does, he says, he thinks "everybody will agree."

But Democrat Ron Wyden of Oregon remains undecided, saying it's not clear what the effects of a military strike would be.

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